Review: Robin Vol. 1: The Lazarus Tournament trade paperback (DC Comics)

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Wednesday, May 25, 2022

Joshua Williamson’s Robin Vol. 1: The Lazarus Tournament is silly, irreverent, and doesn’t quite seem to know what comic it wants to be, and I rather enjoyed it.

To me the benchmark of a Robin comic still remains Chuck Dixon’s Tim Drake series, Robin fighting crime while negotiating high school and staying on the right side of his “suburban Jim Gordon,” Steven “Shotgun” Smith. It was the equivalent of a modern CW show, never too dark and with plenty of levity, and that never forgot its protagonist was a teen and populated the world around him primarily with teens, too.

Williamson’s Robin Damian Wayne book feels like it wants to be that kind of teen title, especially toward the end as Damian gathers his own team of teen-something heroes. But we’re a ways from Gotham Heights, as Damian negotiates both a supernatural island and a fighting tournament where hearts are ripped out of bodies with alacrity. It’s a weird mix, maybe a more appropriate mix for Damian than a high school setting, but weird nonetheless — though that weirdness in no small part helped keep my interest. Lazarus is further buoyed by Williamson’s use of fighter cameos from a variety of eras and lineages, which had me scouring the crowd scenes.

DC Trade Solicitations for August 2022 - Trial of the Amazons, War for Earth-3, Justice League Incarnate, Batman: Detective Comics: Arkham Rising, Being Robin, Punchline, Dark Knights of Steel, DC vs. Vampires, Phantom Stranger Omnibus

Sunday, May 22, 2022

Over 25 collections listed in the DC Comics August 2022 trade paperback and hardcover solicitations — after a drought, got to say it feels like things are cooking in the Infinite Frontier era. From Batman: Detective Comics Vol. 3 to Robin Vol. 2, Task Force Z Vol. 1 to King Shark to Robins: Being Robin, no small amount of regular series, mainstream books on the horizon (even if some of the ship dates have bumped from September to October or November). And that’s not to mention Justice League Incarnate and both the Trial of the Amazons and War for Earth-3 crossover collections.

I’m also glad to see the Punchline: Trial of Alexis Kaye collection, not because I particularly favor the hubbub over Punchline, but I do find interesting the in-universe hubbub over Punchline that mirrors reality, and I’m happy to see DC seems committed to collecting the various backup stories and specials of the Infinite Frontier era. At the same time, some wrong lessons perhaps being learned from all the success of DC’s recent 12-issue, continuity-adjacent miniseries — volume one collections of Human Target, Dark Knights Of Steel, and DC vs. Vampires, where once upon a time I think DC would’ve waited and released each of these books as full stories.

All that, and will the Phantom Stranger Omnibus make it this time? Let’s take a look …

American Vampire Omnibus Vol. 1 (2022 Edition)

New printing of the omnibus by Scott Snyder and company (with a short story by Stephen King), collecting American Vampire #1–27, American Vampire: Survival of the Fittest #1–5, and American Vampire: Lord of Nightmares #1–5.

American Vampire Omnibus Vol. 2

By Scott Snyder and company, collecting American Vampire #28–34, American Vampire: The Long Road to Hell #1, American Vampire: Anthology #1–2, American Vampire: Second Cycle #1–11, and American Vampire 1976 #1–10.

Batman Black & White

Collects the new series in paperback.

Batman: Detective Comics Vol. 3: Arkham Rising

In hardcover in September, the third collection by Mariko Tamaki includes "selections from" Detective Comics #1044–1046 and the 2021 Annual #1, ahead of the "Shadows of the Bat" event.

Batman: Hush 20th Anniversary Edition

Twenty years. Wow. Collects Batman #608-619 and the story from Wizard #0, as well as "tons of behind-the-scenes material" and a new cover.

Batman: The Long Halloween: Haunted Knight Deluxe Edition

Once Batman: The Long Halloween made it big, DC released as "Haunted Knight" the three stories Jeph Loeb and Tim Sale did before it that weren't so well known. History repeats itself, as now following the deluxe editions of Long Halloween, Dark Victory, and Catwoman: When in Rome is a deluxe of Haunted Knight, collecting again Batman: Legends of the Dark Knight Halloween Special #1, Batman: Madness - A Legends of the Dark Knight Halloween Special #1, and Batman: Ghosts, A Legends of the Dark Knight Halloween Special #1.

Batman: The Silver Age Omnibus Vol. 1

Collects Batman #101–116 and Detective Comics #233–257. Said to include "restored versions of iconic tales such as 'The Batwoman,' 'The Bat-Ape,' and 'The Rainbow Batman'"

Batman: Urban Legends Vol. 3

In paperback, said to collect issues #11–16. Spotlights include Batman and Zatanna and Ace the Bat-Hound. A previously solicitation also mentioned the Wight Witch/Ghost-Maker story.

Blue & Gold

In paperback, collecting the eight-issue miniseries by Dan Jurgens and Ryan Sook in paperback in September. Could you ever have imagined a future where Blue Beetle and Booster Gold were around to navigate "internet influencers"?

Blue Beetle: Jaime Reyes Book One

Issues #1-12 of the original Jaime Reyes Blue Beetle series by Keith Giffen and Cully Hamner. It'll be interesting to see if DC will continue this through Jaime's various continuities — this, the post-Crisis series, then the New 52 series, then the Rebirth series. Timed, of course, for the new movie, which I'm eager to see.

DC Dark Knights Of Steel Vol. 1

Collects just issues #1-6 in hardcover. I'm a shoo-in to read this eventually, but depending on timing I might wait until all 12 issues are collected at once.

DC vs. Vampires Vol. 1

Issues #1-6 by James Tynion. I might also wait for a full collection of this one but I don't feel as strongly as DC collecting only half of Tom King's Human Target (travesty!). Hardcover in September.

The Flash by Mark Waid Omnibus Vol. 1

Collects Flash #62–91, Flash Annual #4–6, Green Lantern #30–31 and #40, Flash Special #1, and Justice League Quarterly #10, being about the first three Flash by Mark Waid paperbacks and collecting among others the “Return of Barry Allen” storyline and the Zero Hour tie-in that debuted Impulse.

Future State: Gotham Vol. 2: The Next Joker

Previously said to be issues #8–12 by Dennis Culver and Giannis Milonogiannis.

Hardware: Season One

In hardcover, by Brandon Thomas, Reginald Hudlin, Denys Cowan, Bill Sienkiewicz, and more, collecting the first six issues of the new series and Milestone Returns: Infinite Edition #0. Coming in October.

The Human Target Book One

Boo, I say boo, to the hardcover collection of Tom King and Greg Smallwood's The Human Target that only collects issues #1-6. I mean, all best to the creators that maybe the first collection drums up more interest for the end of the series, but I'm holding out for the deluxe collection with all the issues. If it was good enough for Rorschach, it should be good enough for Human Target.

Justice League Incarnate

In hardcover in October (previously announced for September), collecting Joshua Williamson’s multiversal follow-up miniseries to Infinite Frontier.

Nubia & the Amazons

In hardcover in September by Vita Ayala and Stephanie Williams. Said to collect the story from Infinite Frontier #0 and the six-issue miniseries, seemingly including the “Trial of the Amazons” tie-in issues.

The Phantom Stranger Omnibus

This was previously announced in DC Comics Fall 2020 solicitations in March 2020, so not entirely surprising it never made it to print. Here it is again, due out in November 2022. Contents said to be The Phantom Stranger #1-6 (1952), The Phantom Stranger #1-41 (1969), stories from Saga of the Swamp Thing #1-13, Who’s Who: The Definitive Directory of the DC Universe #18, Brave and the Bold #89, #98, and #145, Showcase #80, Justice League of America #103, House of Secrets #150, DC Super-Stars #18, Secret Origins #10, and DC Comics Presents #25 and #72.

Punchline: The Trial of Alexis Kaye

Various Punchline spotlight and backup stories, including from Joker 80th Anniversary 100-Page Super Spectacular #1, The Joker #1–15. Mentioned also in a previous solicitation were Punchline #1 and a story/stories from Batman: Urban Legends. In hardcover in September.

Robin Vol. 2: I Am Robin

In paperback in September, collects Robin #7-12 and Robin 2021 Annual #1 by Joshua Williamson. As with Batman Vol. 6: Abyss and Deathstroke, Inc. Vol. 1, this ends just before the "Shadow War" crossover.

Robins: Being Robin

In paperback in September, collecting the six-issue miniseries by Tim Seeley and Baldemar Rivas.

Suicide Squad: King Shark

I’m not sure I would have run to this one, despite a writer and an artist I both like, Tim Seeley and Scott Kolins, but Seeley also brings back one of his Nightwing characters, too, and I’m curious how that all works together. The six-issue miniseries, in paperback in September.

Task Force Z Vol. 1: Death's Door

I’m in to reading the Infinite Frontier era of books now and I’ve been very impressed to see the seemingly random seeds sprinkled early on that have come to fruition later — namely, that DC killing off one of its most well-known villains ultimately results in the Suicide-Squad-with-zombies series Task Force Z. What an insane concept. I’m excited; issues #1–6 by Matthew Rosenberg with Eddy Barrows arrive in hardcover in November; a previous solicitation, for September, also mentioned the backup stories from Detective Comics #1041–1043. One more volume to follow to finish up this miniseries.

Titans United

On one hand I’m wary of an obvious TV-aligned Titans miniseries that might try to shoehorn TV continuity into the comics Titans; on the other hand, if this brings some sort of classic Hawk and Dove back to continuity, I’m all for it. And the HBO Max show is a guilty pleasure after all. Collects the seven-issue miniseries by Cavan Scott and Jose Luis, in paperback in September.

Trial of the Amazons

In hardcover in October, collecting Trial of the Amazons #1-2, Nubia and the Amazons #6, Wonder Woman #785- 786, and Trial of the Amazons: Wonder Girl #1-2 by Becky Cloonan, Michael Conrad, Stephanie Williams, and Vita Ayala.

War for Earth-3

In paperback in September, collecting the crossover issues Flash #780, Suicide Squad #13, and Teen Titans Academy #13 with War for Earth-3 #1–2.

Wonder Woman by George Pérez Omnibus (2022 Edition)

A new printing of the omnibus collection of Wonder Woman #1-24 and Wonder Woman Annual #1 by the late, great George Pérez.

Wonder Woman: The Golden Age Omnibus Vol. 5

Collects Action Comics #142, Wonder Woman #35-47, and Sensation Comics #90-104.

Review: DC Pride 2021 hardcover/paperback (DC Comics)

Wednesday, May 18, 2022

DC Pride 2021 is a welcome and important collection, and the only thing better than the original prestige format anthology is the release of a collection with additional material. What had originally seemed might be the entire contents of some of the DC’s recent holiday-themed anthologies ultimately turns out to be just a relevant story each from New Year’s Evil, Mysteries of Love in Space, and Young Monsters in Love. At least in my copy of the collection, these appear just before what was originally the final story in DC Pride and without any indication that they were once separate, such that the whole book feels like a cohesive piece.

[Review contains spoilers]

While books like the New Talent Showcase and the aforementioned holiday specials can sometimes sacrifice story and characterization for spotlighting new-to-DC writers, DC Pride 2021 impressively follows from the DCU mainstream, with stories in the wake of Infinite Frontier and Future State. That, among others, specifically the Batman and Detective Comics writers are here — James Tynion and Mariko Tamaki respectively — indicates the profile DC has assigned to this book.

Review: Batman: Urban Legends Vol. 1 trade paperback

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Sunday, May 15, 2022

We’ve had precious little collected so far from the Batman: Urban Legends anthology series, and even then, it’s early to know if this will be primarily one-off index stories, if DC will make a concerted effort to tie it all back to the ongoing Bat-books, how much of that will pan out, and so on. I’m reminded of the Showcase '90s books, and I guess the answer is “a little of all of that,” though I remember being more pleased with Showcase when a book followed up on “X character will return” than when it didn’t.

This is relevant when reading Batman: Urban Legends Vol. 1 as, for each of the stories here — Red Hood and Grifter respectively — a promise is made, and I’m more eager to see those promises followed-up upon than forgotten. The good news is that this book’s writers are Chip Zdarsky, incoming Batman writer, and Matthew Rosenberg, who seems to have plenty of work at DC these days, so the chances of follow-up here is relatively high. Also that Zdarsky writes a good Batman ahead of his turn in the big leagues.

Review: The Next Batman: Second Son hardcover/paperback (DC Comics)

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Wednesday, May 11, 2022

For me, if DC is going to call a character “the next Batman,” as in John Ridley’s The Next Batman: Second Son, they’re going to have to make it convincing bordering on inevitable. Replace a Robin or a Blue Beetle, I’m bound to give some leeway in terms of the character who can take up that mantle. But “the next Batman” — especially a wholly new character, that’s going to need to be a character with some chops.

[Review contains spoilers]

Further, this is going to be a character who either reminds very strongly of Bruce Wayne — let’s say, another avenging orphan, but maybe one born into less privileged circumstances than Bruce — or whose origin is equally compelling but deviates from the standard in some significant way. Bruce fights crime because his parents were murdered, so perhaps as an opposite but similar number, someone who fights crime to atone for they themselves being a murderer. What if Joe Chill became Batman, and such.

Review: Harley Quinn Vol. 1: No Good Deed hardcover/paperback (DC Comics)

Sunday, May 08, 2022

Stephanie Phillips' Harley Quinn Vol. 1: No Good Deed is the Harley Quinn book that DC Comics has always wanted, and with art by Riley Rossmo, a darn good-looking book, too. But I feel maybe DC’s gain is our loss; the continuity wonk in me is pleased but the seasoned Harley reader is not.

[Review contains spoilers]

James Tynion and company have talked about a concerted effort to create carryover between the Bat-family books in the wake of Infinite Frontier, and that sure is apparently in No Good Deed. Where once upon a time it was hard to even get acknowledgment that the Harley Quinn who appeared in Suicide Squad was even the same character as the one who appeared in her eponymous series, this Harley is specifically, effervescently straight from the pages of Tynion’s Batman Vol. 2: Joker War. It all happened, and then some — Harley’s tangle with Clown-Hunter, her fight with Punchline, the revenge she took on the Joker.

Review: Nightwing Vol. 1: Leaping Into the Light hardcover/paperback (DC Comics)

Wednesday, May 04, 2022

After a long drought of good Nightwing material, Tom Taylor and Bruno Redondo’s Nightwing Vol. 1: Leaping Into the Light is exactly what the character needed.

It treads very lightly; Taylor’s Nightwing Dick Grayson is always in the right place at the right time, makes the right decisions, says the right things. I’m left to wonder — rarely do we see things go this right for our heroes without precipitating some major fall, but that seems too cruel even for DCeased’s Taylor in this context.

So, I’m curious what Taylor has up his sleeve, what the legacy will be of this Nightwing run, whether the sunniness of Light is a mission statement or a feint. Either way, given what this title has just been through, I can surely appreciate some levity as we get back to basics.

Review: Catwoman Vol. 5: Valley of the Shadow of Death trade paperback (DC Comics)

Sunday, May 01, 2022

With Infinite Frontier, Ram V’s Catwoman is off to a slow start, but I’d venture that has more to do with lining up with “Fear State” over in the Batman titles than any failing on Ram V’s part. Catwoman Vol. 5: Valley of the Shadow of Death is only four issues and an annual as is, really just a three-parter and some side tales. The next collection, due in June, is the very “Fear State” tie-in, five issues long, and Ram V’s finale on the title — so my sense of Valley as a milder calm before the storm is not without reason.

Still, Ram V certainly makes something readable out of it, and art by Fernando Blanco is always welcome. Clearly since Rebirth DC has been trying to find a satisfactory positioning for Selina Kyle — with Batman, not with Batman, outside Gotham, back in Gotham — made all the more important now with her latest cinematic appearance. The next writer may have different plans, but I think what Ram V’s tries here has a lot of potential.

Review: Batman: Detective Comics Vol. 1: The Neighborhood hardcover/paperback (DC Comics)

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Wednesday, April 27, 2022

I really like the approach inherent in Mariko Tamaki’s Batman: Detective Comics Vol. 1: The Neighborhood, and all in all I consider this debut volume a success. Insofar as the book adheres to the “A Bat of the People” moniker splashed at the top of the back of the book, Neighborhood and I are good; when Neighborhood deviates from that is where it starts to lose me.

But I appreciate Tamaki’s afterword where she outlines her thinking for the book, and indeed this just comes down to simple difference in what one wants from a Batman story, with Tamaki surely representing a greater swath of the audience. I see now, surprisingly, that Tamaki’s Detective run is already scheduled to close, but I’m eager to read more like this before it does.

[Review contains spoilers]

As Tamaki describes, the events of Batman Vol. 2: Joker War see Bruce Wayne, if not necessarily in the poorhouse, in reduced enough financial straits that he forgoes stately Wayne Manor for a chic Gotham brownstone. Such leads to Bruce going where he’s never gone before … a casual get-together with his moneyed neighbors. This being a Batman story, of course, one of the neighbors is murdered, the rest are seemingly suspects, and things spiral out from there — Huntress is involved, and a Clayface, and the Penguin, and the bizarre super-strong criminal father of the murder victim. Plus buildings important to Gotham’s infrastructure keep getting blown up.

Review: Infinite Frontier hardcover/paperback (DC Comics)

Sunday, April 24, 2022

There’s a prescient moment at the end of Grant Morrison’s Final Crisis where the apparent last Monitor, Nix Uotan, wakes as human in Metropolis to the sound of radio commentators discussing the newly revealed “parallel worlds” — the newly resurrected DC Multiverse (not for the first time — or the last time, either). Aside for a few references in Final Crisis follow-ups, however, the apparent public knowledge of the multiverse was mostly ignored and disregarded, if not right away then surely once DC reset their continuity with the New 52.

More’s the pity because, among other things, this might have offered some useful differentiation at a moment when the DC Universe needed it (see the decline of the next few years that ended up with the New 52). After 80-odd years, I think “the DCU is just like our world, only with superheroes” wouldn’t be harmed by an update. Consider as an example the Marvel Cinematic Universe, which upon reaching the end of its first “phase trilogy” and contemplating its future, overlaid its entire continuity with a five-year “blip” that affected some, left behind others, and defined the culture of that fictional world as something all its own. The DCU had a similar opportunity with “people just like us but who live with the knowledge of parallel worlds.”

Review: Batman Vol. 4: The Cowardly Lot hardcover/paperback (DC Comics)

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Wednesday, April 20, 2022

James Tynion performs some curious alchemy in Batman Vol. 4: The Cowardly Lot, taking what might otherwise be considered a plotting difficulty and making it a central piece of the story.

Tynion’s Batman run has been an enjoyable mess of fits and starts, about to come to a sudden halt after the next volume, the “Fear State” crossover; as such I wasn’t quite sure what to expect from Cowardly Lot. I’m not wholly sure this volume isn’t just an exercise in biding time until the crossover, and yet, there’s some brilliant ideas and intriguing possibilities here. Whether any of this will come to fruition in the next volume — or ever be mentioned again after — remains to be seen.

[Review contains spoilers]

At this point Tynion has pretty well jettisoned most members of the Bat-family from this title, replacing them with his own creations; Ghost-Maker, most prominently, occupies the space in which we might expect to see Nightwing. I’m not necessarily complaining, mind you; there is such a voluminous library of Batman material already that bringing in some new faces is about the only original route left.

DC Trade Solicitations for July 2022 — Batman: One Dark Knight, I Am Batman and Harley Quinn Fear State, Joker Puzzlebox, Robin & Batman by Lemire, Wonder Girl: Homecoming, Deathstroke Inc., Superman: Action Comics Vol. 2: Arena

Sunday, April 17, 2022

I’ve alluded to this before, but truly of late I feel my comics habits changing. Whereas before something like Batman: One Dark Knight might not have been for me — what I might have considered a generic one-off Batman story — now I’m pretty interested to see what Jock offers in a DC Black Label Batman story. There’s a bunch of that in the DC Comics July 2022 hardcover and trade paperback solicitations — the whodunit Joker Presents: A Puzzlebox, Jeff Lemire’s Robin & Batman among them. Give me a good continuity-rich whopper any day, but a good writer’s personal take on a set of characters, no catching up on past events required? I’ll take that too, more readily than before.

Of course, said regular series titles are no slouch this month, either. I just enjoyed James Tynion’s first Joker collection, and here comes Joker Vol. 2. We’ve got “Fear State” tie-ins with Harley Quinn Vol. 2 and I Am Batman Vol. 1. Wonder Woman’s on the road to “Trial of the Amazons” with Wonder Woman Vol. 2 and Wonder Girl: Homecoming; a seemingly major corner of the new DCU arrives with Deathstroke Inc. Vol. 1. Plus more — all in all, a lot I’m looking forward to this month.

Let’s dig in and see.

Batman vs. Robin: Road to War

In paperback in August, these are the stories by Robbie Thompson, Peter Tomasi, and Joshua Williamson across Teen Titans, Detective Comics, and Batman and Detective respectively that lead in to Williamson’s new Robin series and, by association, the “Shadow War” crossover. On one hand, I love these kinds of “follow a storyline, not a title” collections; on the other hand, on the assumption that the Batman/Detective backup stories get included in Williamson’s first Robin collection, there’s nothing here in this collection for me that I haven’t read elsewhere.

On the third hand(?!), I feel like DC seems to be putting a lot of stock in this storyline running up to “Shadow War” — do people need a collection specifically focused a split between Batman and Robin that’s now presumably resolved? Only thing I can think is that maybe the rumors about “Shadow War” tying in some unforeseen way to DC’s next big event are true and that might spark some interest in where it all began.

Anyway, collecting Teen Titans #43–44 and the Teen Titans Annual #2 (the inciting incidents of the rift between Batman and Robin Damian Wayne), Detective Comics #1032–1033 (follow-up by Tomasi with Damian quitting as Robin), Batman #106 (part one of a Robin backup story), and Detective Comics #1034 (part two of the backup story). A previous solicitation had a story from Robin 80th Anniversary 100-Page Super Spectacular #1 (by Thompson, prelude to the rest), but that's now omitted from the listing.

Batman: Curse of the White Knight Deluxe Edition

Deluxe-size edition of the second book in Sean Murphy’s “White Knight” series, eight issues plus the Batman: White Knight Presents Von Freeze one-shot.

Batman: One Dark Knight

In hardcover in July, collecting the three-issue miniseries written and drawn by Jock. If it says DC Black Label on it, it's worth a look for me.

Constantine: Distorted Illusions

I was thinking this was a sequel YA Constantine graphic novel, but it’s not — this one, with a teen-ish John Constantine, is by Kami Garcia, whereas the original one I was thinking of was The Mystery of the Meanest Teacher: A Johnny Constantine Graphic Novel, starring a kid-ish Constantine, by Ryan North. Not one but two kids' books starring the Hellblazer himself — who’d ever would have thunk it.

The solicitation calls Garcia’s book a “magical team-up,” though it doesn’t say who Constantine is teaming up with; if I had to guess from the cover, however, I’d venture that’s Black Canary in rock singer mode and maybe Zatanna.

DC Poster Portfolio: Brian Bolland

Solicitation offers this'll range from Animal Man to the Joker.

Deadman Tells the Spooky Tales

Just so much creative kids' stuff coming out from DC these days. By Franco and friends.

Deathstroke Inc. Vol. 1: King of the Super-Villains

In hardcover in August, issues #1-7 by Joshua Williamson, Howard Porter and others, plus a story from Batman: Urban Legends #6. This ends just before the "Shadow War" crossover, contemporaneous with Batman Vol. 6: Abyss.

Harley Quinn & the Gotham City Sirens Omnibus (2022 Edition)

Paul Dini and friends’ Gotham City Sirens #1–26 and the Catwoman #83 special.

Harley Quinn Vol. 2: Keepsake

The second volume by Stephanie Nicole Phillips and Riley Rossmo. Issues #7-12, including three “Fear State” issues, Catwoman, Poison Ivy, and more.

Harley Quinn: 30 Years of the Maid of Mischief: The Deluxe Edition

If I’m understanding correctly, there’s going to be a Harley Quinn 30th Anniversary Special, and this is a deluxe hardcover of a story or stories from that plus the following: Batman Adventures #12, Detective Comics #831, Batman and Robin Adventures #18, Batman: Gotham Adventures #10, Batman: Gotham Knights #14, Harley Quinn #3, Gotham City Sirens #20–21, Harley Quinn Holiday Special #1, Harley Quinn: Be Careful What You Wish For Special Edition #1, Harley Quinn 25th Anniversary Special #1, Harley Quinn: Make 'Em Laugh #3, and Harley Quinn: Black + White + Red #14.

Harley Quinn: The Animated Series Vol. 1: The Eat. Bang! Kill. Tour

Interesting that the collection of the Tee Franklin miniseries is listed as Vol. 1, since it collects the whole thing, issues #1–6. Does this suggest more to come?

House of Mystery: The Bronze Age Omnibus Vol. 3

Issues #227–254 of the 1970s series.

I Am Batman Vol. 1

In hardcover, collecting issues #0–5 of the new series by John Ridley.

The Joker Presents: A Puzzlebox

In hardcover in August by Matthew Rosenberg, Jesus Merino, and others, collecting the seven-issue whodunit miniseries. I’m excited to read this one and not figure out who did it before the end (I never do!).

The Joker Vol. 2

The second collection from James Tynion and Guillem March, in hardcover in August, collecting issues #6–9 and the 2021 Annual #1. Seems like kind of a short trade, but what do I know. I would imagine the next collection will go to #15, the end of this “season”.

Joker/Harley: Criminal Sanity

Paperback of Joker/Harley: Criminal Sanity (which I reviewed), following the hardcover, by Kami Garcia. Said to include an “all-new story from the Harley Quinn 30th Anniversary Special.”

Kamandi by Jack Kirby Vol. 1

Kamandi #1–20 by Jack Kirby.

New Teen Titans Omnibus Vol. 1 (2022 Edition)

Just as this series of New Teen Titans reprints is ending, looks like DC’s going back to print them all over again. Good that they’ll be available, though I wanted to see the series continue on to the New Titans era. Collects the New Teen Titans first appearance in DC Comics Presents #26, plus New Teen Titans #1-20, New Teen Titans Annual #1, Best of DC (Blue Ribbon Digest) #18, and Tales of the New Teen Titans #1-4.

Robin & Batman

In hardcover in August, collecting the three-issue miniseries by Jeff Lemire and Dustin Nguyen. DC's struggle with their canonical version of Dick Grayson's costume continues.

Superman: Action Comics Vol. 2: The Arena

The second collection by Phillip Kennedy Johnson, collected in paperback, and connecting (after a fashion) with Superman and the Authority. Collects issues #1036-1041.

The Swamp Thing Volume 2: Conduit

Issues #5–10 by Ram V and Mike Perkins. This finishes the first “season” of the comic, which has recently been extended with a second season of issues #11–16.

Who’s Who Omnibus Vol. 2

Continuing the long-awaited collection series, this is Who’s Who in the DC Universe #1-16 (what I believe is the 1990s "loose-leaf" version), Who’s Who in the Legion of Super-Heroes #1-7, and Who’s Who Update 1993 #1-2.

Wonder Girl: Homecoming

Said to collect Joelle Jones' Wonder Girl #1-7, Future State: Wonder Woman #1-2, the vignette from Infinite Frontier #0, and (new to this solicitation) Trial of the Amazons: Wonder Girl #1-2. I'd find it hard to believe if those last two issues aren't also in the Trial of the Amazons collection proper. In hardcover in August.

Wonder Woman Black & Gold

Collects issues #1–6 of the series.

Wonder Woman Vol. 2: Through a Glass Darkly

The second collection of Becky Cloonan and Michael Conrad's run, collecting Wonder Woman #780-784, the Wonder Woman 2021 Annual #1, and what's said to be just one story from the Wonder Woman 80th Anniversary 100-Page Super Spectacular #1. “Trial of the Amazons” ties in to this series beginning with issue #785.

Review: The Joker Vol. 1 hardcover/paperback (DC Comics)

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Wednesday, April 13, 2022

In the heyday of Gotham Central, I remember an interview (even perhaps an introduction to one of the trades) where the creators expressed enthusiasm for a Jim Gordon, private investigator-type series — that it would have been a bigger prize even than Gotham Central, if I recall correctly, had it been allowed. It’s some 15 years or so later, the creators are totally different, but with James Tynion’s The Joker Vol. 1, that idea of a Jim Gordon, PI series somewhat comes to fruition.

[Review contains spoilers for Joker and Infinite Frontier]

This approach seems the right one, perhaps the only one — there’s no question at this moment in time (or a couple years previous) having a Joker series on the stands was an utmost necessity, DC’s version of printing money. At the same time, an ongoing Joker series seems difficult, if not misguided1 — the very things that make the Joker interesting could easily be extinguished by overexposure (if not already) and by giving him a supporting cast and a bunch of friends and etc. (distinctly, it’s hard to imagine a Joker series working in the style of Harley Quinn).

Review: Batman/Superman: The Archive of Worlds hardcover/paperback (DC Comics)

Sunday, April 10, 2022

I will admit to an assumption, which is that when a new writer comes on a title for just one storyline and then the title is cancelled, that there was some fundamental flaw in the writer’s take that just didn’t catch on with readers. And that was doubly so my assumption with the cancellation of Batman/Superman after Gene Luen Yang’s Batman/Superman: The Archive of Worlds. Without taking away from Yang’s accomplishments across a wide swath of comics, I’ve found his work coming in on mainstream, established titles to be among his weakest, and my guess was that Archive would show similar troubles.

While it may still be that Archive of Worlds didn’t catch on (but perhaps, in hindsight, more likely that the title got canned so as to relaunch with a new issue #1 for new series writer Mark Waid), it turns out I enjoyed it far more than I expected. Despite a little silliness around the edges, Yang does well with a multiverse-crossover concept that never quite needs to utter the world “multiverse.”

Review: Crime Syndicate trade paperback (DC Comics)

Wednesday, April 06, 2022

With the advent of the Infinite Frontier era, it seems DC is finally getting serious about their multiverse as more than just window dressing. Andy Schmidt and Kieran McKeown’s Crime Syndicate is exactly the kind of thing I want, a miniseries (if not a series) focusing on alt-Earth characters as characters in their own right and not just in relation to the Earth-0 “mainstream” heroes.

This is just the start, of course, so it remains to be seen if this is actually something DC intends to pursue. Kicking things off with the Crime Syndicate on its own is concerning, given that this is the third or fourth iteration of these characters in recent memory and now they’ve been rebooted once again; the “Crime Syndicate” concept doesn’t really symbolize a cogent, stable multiverse. Add to it that Schmidt and McKeown’s violent comedy tone wasn’t what I was looking for from a Crime Syndicate comic, being neither particularly funny nor particularly moving.

Batman: Shadow War, Shadows of the Bat: House of Gotham and the Tower, Trial of the Amazons, War for Earth-3, Batman and Wonder Woman Earth One Complete Collections, Flash by Waid Omnibus, Superman: Birthright Deluxe, more in DC Comics Fall 2022 solicitations

Sunday, April 03, 2022

Looking at the DC Comics Fall 2022 trade paperback and hardcover catalog solicitations, there is very little, almost none, in terms of new collection series of old material or even new volumes continuing existing collections series. I know that will not be what many of you want to see.

There are a lot of reprints of older omnibuses, and there are a lot of good-looking collections of DC’s current major events — Batman: Shadow War, Trial of the Amazons, and War for Earth-3. In addition, there are supplemental volumes collecting lead-in materials to the crossovers — specifically Tales of the Amazons and Batman vs. Robin: Road to War. What I see here (and given especially how books like Robin Vol. 2 and Deathstroke Inc. Vol. 1 dovetail directly into their crossovers) is a DC that’s very organized, hitting its marks, releasing precisely the books it needs to capitalize on where current attention lies.

This will be a controversial thing to say, but given a choice between a DC mostly focused on simply reprinting books it’s released in the past or a DC mostly focused on spiffy collections of its latest books, I’d have to go with the latter. One would hope it’s not an either/or choice, but in today’s climate, it probably is. Just like the adage about how if a shark stops swimming, it dies, if DC stops releasing new material, that’s probably a danger sign. There is not here another Infinity Inc. collection or a Bronze Age Doom Patrol book (though there is a Flash by Mark Waid Omnibus! And a new Milestone Compendium with "Worlds Collide"!), but I take solace, for instance, in a pretty complete set of the big doings over in Detective Comics lately, being Detective Comics Vol. 3: Arkham Rising, Shadows of the Bat: House of Gotham, and Shadows of the Bat: The Tower. These listings could be better, but they sure could be worse, or not at all.

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It’s been nine months, but the new DC seasonal catalog is finally here. Hopefully it’s not another nine months until the next one. Let’s dig in, how about it?

Absolute Doomsday Clock

I mean, so many mixed feelings about Doomsday Clock in general, but if you didn't read it another way, this is a way to read it. I do see a re-read on the horizon for me, in relation to another forthcoming DC book.

The Absolute Multiversity

In Absolute format, collecting Grant Morrison's Multiversity #1-2, Multiversity Guidebook #1, The Society of Super-Heroes #1, The Just #1, Pax Americana #1, Thunderworld Adventures #1, Mastermen #1, and Ultra Comics #1.

Absolute Swamp Thing by Len Wein and Bernie Wrightson

Swamp Thing's first appearance in House of Secrets #92 and Swamp Thing #1-13, in Absolute format.

American Vampire 1976

Paperback collection of the 12-issue miniseries by Scott Snyder and Rafael Albuquerque, following the hardcover.

American Vampire Omnibus Vol. 1 (2022 Edition)

New printing of the omnibus by Scott Snyder and company (with a short story bY Stephen King), collecting American Vampire #1–27, American Vampire: Survival of the Fittest #1–6, and American Vampire: Lord of Nightmares #1–5.

American Vampire Omnibus Vol. 2

By Scott Snyder and company, collecting American Vampire #28–34, American Vampire: The Long Road to Hell #1, American Vampire: Anthology #1–2, American Vampire: Second Cycle #1–11, and American Vampire 1976 #1–10 (wondering if that should be #1–12).

[See the latest DC trade solicitations.]

The Animal Man Omnibus (2022 Edition)

Reprints the Animal Man Omnibus, collecting Grant Morrison’s issues #1–26 and the story from Secret Origins #39. At what point did we start calling Buddy Baker “the Animal Man”?

Aquaman: 80 Years of the King of the Seven Seas: The Deluxe Edition

Another of DC's anniversary hardcovers. The solicited contents for this seem way off base, describing a range of 50 to 100 comics, though some of the quirky one-offs named are interesting — JLA: Our Worlds at War #1 and Outsiders: Five of a Kind - Metamorpho/Aquaman #1, for two. Maybe just excerpts thereof? Said to be _Aquaman_ #0-37; _JLA: Our Worlds at War_ #1; _Aquaman_ #17; _Outsiders: Five of a Kind - Metamorpho/Aquaman_ #1; _Adventure Comics_ #120-137, 232-266, and 269-475; _More Fun Comics_ #73; _Aquaman_ #11-35 and 46-62; two different _Aquaman_ #1s; _Aquaman Special_ #1; and _Aquaman__ #25, coming in February 2023.

Aquaman/Green Arrow - Deep Target

Collects the seven-issue miniseries. I wasn’t much moved by this unlikely pairing on the occasion of both characters' anniversaries, but the fact that Brandon Thomas is involved — Aquamen writer, and whose Future State: Aquaman I really enjoyed — makes me slightly curious.

Aquamen

In paperback, collecting the first five issues of the series by Brandon Thomas and Chuck Brown. An unlikely name for a book that’s looking better and better, and maybe this should start a trend at DC — Supermen, Batmen, Robins, and so on.

Arkham City - The Order of the World

In paperback in November, collecting the six-issue miniseries by Dan Watters and Dani (whose art I enjoyed on The Low, Low Woods).

Batgirls Vol. 1

In paperback, collecting Batgirls #1-6 and the short stories from Batman #115-117 by Becky Cloonan and Michael Conrad.

Batman & Robin by Tomasi and Gleason Omnibus (2022 Edition)

New collection of the stories by Peter Tomasi and Patrick Gleason. Includes Batman & Robin #20–22, Batman & Robin #0–40 (New 52), Batman & Robin Annual #1–3, Robin Rises: Omega #1, Robin Rises: Alpha #1, and a story from Secret Origins #4.

Batman Beyond: Neo-Year

In paperback, collecting the six-issue miniseries by Jackson Lanzing and Collin Kelly.

Batman: Black and White Box Set

Five Batman: Black and White trades, apparently to include backup stories from the Gotham Knight series.

Batman Vol. 6: Abyss

Collects Joshua Williamson's interstitial run on Batman between James Tynion and upcoming writer Chip Zdarsky. This is Batman #118-121 and #124; issues #122-123 are part of the Batman: Shadow War crossover with Robin and Deathstroke, Inc.

Batman vs. Ra's al Ghul

Paperback collection of the six-issue Neal Adams miniseries, following the hardcover.

Batman vs. Robin: Road to War

In paperback in August, these are the stories by Robbie Thompson, Peter Tomasi, and Joshua Williamson across Teen Titans, Detective Comics, and Batman and Detective respectively that lead in to Williamson’s new Robin series and, by association, the “Shadow War” crossover. On one hand, I love these kinds of “follow a storyline, not a title” collections; on the other hand, on the assumption that the Batman/Detective backup stories get included in Williamson’s first Robin collection, there’s nothing here in this collection for me that I haven’t read elsewhere.

On the third hand(?!), I feel like DC seems to be putting a lot of stock in this storyline running up to “Shadow War” — do people need a collection specifically focused a split between Batman and Robin that’s now presumably resolved? Only thing I can think is that maybe the rumors about “Shadow War” tying in some unforeseen way to DC’s next big event are true and that might spark some interest in where it all began.

Anyway, collecting a story from Robin 80th Anniversary 100-Page Super Spectacular #1 (by Thompson, prelude to the following), Teen Titans #43–44 and the Teen Titans Annual #2 (the inciting incidents of the rift between Batman and Robin Damian Wayne), Detective Comics #1032–1033 (follow-up by Tomasi with Damian quitting as Robin), Batman #106 (part one of a Robin backup story), and Detective Comics #1034 (part two of the backup story).

Batman: Black and White

Collects issues #1–6 of the new series.

Batman: Curse of the White Knight: The Deluxe Edition

Deluxe-size edition of the second book in Sean Murphy’s “White Knight” series.

Batman: Detective Comics Vol. 3: Arkham Rising

In hardcover in September, the third collection by Mariko Tamaki includes Detective Comics #1044–1046 and the 2021 Annual #1.

Batman: Earth One Complete Collection

Glad to still see some life left in the Earth One books. I’ve been expecting this for a while, especially since publication of new Earth One books has slowed to nothing. The Superman, Batman, and Wonder Woman books respectively were all meant as trilogies, so collected editions of all three volumes together should make for a particular nice, big graphic novel. Only a little sorry not to see this in hardcover. By Geoff Johns and Gary Frank, coming in August. See the Wonder Woman edition elsewhere in this list.

Batman: Hush 20th Anniversary Edition

Twenty years. Wow. Collects Batman #608-619 and the story from Wizard #0, as well as sketches, character designs, what's called "altered art", and annotations from Jim Lee.

Batman: Joker's Asylum

I recall these one-shots being a pretty easy pass in the late 2000s, outside mainstream events and without particularly mainstream creative teams (though with the benefit of time I see now we have Kelley Jones on Clayface and Guillem March on Poison Ivy). Most relevant I think is that what was once two paperbacks is now one, coming in December. Collects Joker’s Asylum: Joker #1, Joker’s Asylum: Penguin #1, Joker’s Asylum: Poison Ivy #1, Joker’s Asylum: Scarecrow #1, Joker’s Asylum: Two-Face #1, Joker’s Asylum II: The Riddler #1, Joker’s Asylum II: Harley Quinn #1, Joker’s Asylum II: Mad Hatter #1, Joker’s Asylum II: Killer Croc #1, and Joker’s Asylum II: Clayface #1. That’s a full deck!

Batman: Killing Time

It’s pretty awesome to see Tom King back on Batman so soon after the end of Batman/Catwoman; glad that was not the end of the two’s shared history. In hardcover in December, collecting the six-issue heist caper.

Batman: No Man's Land Omnibus Vol. 2

Contents match the third and fourth recent paperback volumes, including Azrael: Agent of the Bat #58-61, Batman #569-574, Batman Chronicles #18, Batman: Legends of the Dark Knight #122-126, Batman: No Man's Land #0, Batman: No Man's Land Secret Files and Origins #1, Batman: Shadow of the Bat #89-94, Catwoman #75-77, Detective Comics #736-741, Nightwing #38-39, Robin #68-73, and selections from the Batman: No Man's Land Gallery.

Batman: One Dark Knight

In hardcover in July, collecting the three-issue miniseries written and drawn by Jock. If it says DC Black Label on it, it's worth a look for me.

Batman: Shadow War

In hardcover in November, collecting Batman #122–123, Robin #13–14, Deathstroke Inc. #8–9, Shadow War: Alpha #1, Shadow War: Omega #1, and Shadow War Zone #1 by Joshua Williamson and friends.

Batman: Shadows of the Bat: House of Gotham

If I’m understanding correctly, among the 12-part “Shadows of the Bat” story that recently ran weekly in Mariko Tamaki’s Detective Comics #1047–1058, this is the dedicated collection of the “House of Gotham” backup stories by Matthew Rosenberg.

Batman: Shadows of the Bat: The Tower

Collects the main story from the weekly “Shadows of the Bat” event that ran through Mariko Tamaki’s Detective Comics #1047–1058, in hardcover in December.

Batman: The Court of Owls Mask and Book Set

Why is this back out? I mean, great story, but is there something new about the Owls out there other than the recent Batman: The Adventures Continue book? Maybe it’s a spoiler I don’t want to know about. This is a paperback of Scott Snyder’s Batman #1–7 with a Court of Owls mask.

Batman: The Long Halloween: Haunted Knight Deluxe Edition

Once Batman: The Long Halloween made it big, DC released as "Haunted Knight" the three stories Jeph Loeb and Tim Sale did before that which weren't so well known. History repeats itself, as now following the deluxe editions of Long Halloween, Dark Victory, and Catwoman: When in Rome is a deluxe of Haunted Knight, collecting again Batman: Legends of the Dark Knight Halloween Special #1, Batman: Madness - A Legends of the Dark Knight Halloween Special #1, and Batman: Ghosts, A Legends of the Dark Knight Halloween Special #1.

Batman: Urban Legends Vol. 3

In paperback, said to collect issues #11–16. Story spotlights include Batman and Zatanna, Ace the Bat-Hound and the Super-Pets, and Wight Witch and Ghost-Maker.

Batman: Urban Legends Vol. 4

Said to be stories of Batman Beyond Terry McGinnis and Batman teamed with Zatanna, plus the placeholder cover has Batman and the Question on it. In paperback in January.

Batman/Catwoman

In hardcover in December (same as Tom King’s Batman: Killing Time), collecting the 12-issue miniseries by King and Clay Mann, plus the Batman/Catwoman special.

Black Adam Box Set

It feels a little bit like the late 1990s/early 2000s again, but among the many good things about the forthcoming Black Adam movie is a bevy of Black Adam collections materials. This box set — a Black Adam box set, can you even imagine? — collects what’s now called Black Adam/JSA: Black Reign (formerly JSA Vol. 8: Black Reign, being JSA #56–58 and Hawkman #23–25, with the JSA losing the top billing in their own book), Shazam! Vol. 1 (the Geoff Johns/Gary Frank backup from the New 52 Justice League), and Black Adam: Rise and Fall of an Empire, a cut down of relevant pages from the 52 weekly series.

Black Adam: Rise and Fall of an Empire

This would be kind of a double-dip purchase for me, but at the same time I’m very curious how it’ll read. Essentially this is just the Black Adam material from the 52 weekly series, said to collect stories from 52 #1–3, 6–10, 12–16, 18–26, 29–34, 36–40, 43–50, and 52. It has been a while since I read 52 but I feel like the stories were very interwoven, especially toward the end, and I wonder to what extent a cogent story can be told with just the Black Adam parts and not the Elongated Man or Question parts. At the same time, I’m now very interested in a Pulp Fiction-esque set of interweaving 52 collections, this one with all the Black Adam material, that one with all the Question Renee Montoya material, and so on.

Black Adam: The Dark Age (New Edition)

New printing of the six-issue miniseries by Peter Tomasi and Doug Mahnke, in paperback next July. I reviewed Black Adam: The Dark Age some 10 years ago.

Black Adam/JSA: Black Reign (New Edition)

New edition of JSA Vol. 8: Black Reign, which collected JSA #56–58 and Hawkman #23–25. Apparently getting a movie gives Black Adam top billing in the JSA's own book. I reviewed JSA: Black Reign some 15 years ago.

Black Manta

Collects the six-issue miniseries by Chuck Brown, plus a story from Aquaman 80th Anniversary 100-Page Super Spectacular, leading in to the new Aquamen series.

Blue & Gold

In paperback, collecting the eight-issue miniseries by Dan Jurgens and Ryan Sook in paperback in September..

Blue Beetle: Jaime Reyes Book One

Issues #1-12 of the original Jaime Reyes Blue Beetle series by Keith Giffen and Cully Hamner. It'll be interesting to see if DC will continue this through Jaime's various continuities — this, the post-Crisis series, then the New 52 series, then the Rebirth series. Timed, of course, for the new movie, which I'm eager to see.

Books of Magic Omnibus Vol. 3 (The Sandman Universe Classics)

Collects The Trenchcoat Brigrade #1–4, Vertigo Secret Files: Hellblazer #1, The Names of Magic #1–5, Hunter: The Age of Magic #1–25, and The Books of Magick: Life During Wartime #1–15, with Dylan Horrocks and Si Spurrier.

Brightest Day Omnibus (2022 Edition)

Not really sure why this is being reissued, unless for the movie-prominent Aquaman and movie-adjacent Osiris. Anyway, issues #0-24 of the twice-monthly series. Does not seem to include the related Swamp Thing miniseries.

Catwoman Vol. 1

The first collection of the new run by Toni Howard and Nico Leon, issues #39–44, coming in November.

Catwoman: Lonely City

The four-issue DC Black Label miniseries by Cliff Chiang, in hardcover.

Dark Nights: Metal Omnibus

Given 744 pages, I assume this is more than just the miniseries, but exactly how many ancillary stories are included, it doesn’t say.

DC Dark Knights of Steel Vol. 1

I am excited about this but not sure about the Vol. 1 label, which maybe suggests we won’t get all 12 issues in one book (yet. No doubt even if this is just the first six issues in hardcover, a full version will come around eventually).

DC Horror Presents: Soul Plumber

Connecting the six-issue miniseries in October in hardcover.

DC Poster Portfolio: Brian Bolland

I imagine this’ll have the Joker in it.

DC vs. Vampires Vol. 1

Issues #1-6 by James Tynion. I might also wait for a full collection of this one but I don't feel as strongly as DC collecting only half of Tom King's Human Target (travesty!). Hardcover in September.

Death Of Superman 30th Anniversary Deluxe Edition

At first glance I thought this was another “Death of Superman” omnibus, but it’s actually a deluxe size collection of just the “Doomsday” story. Which ought be pretty cool when you think about the Superman #75 splash pages. Collects Action Comics #683–684, Adventures of Superman #496–498, Superman #73–75, Superman: The Man of Steel #17–19, and Newstime: The Life and Death of Superman.

Deathbed (2022 Edition)

New collection of the 2018 Vertigo miniseries by Joshua Williamson and Riley Rossmo.

Deathstroke Inc. Vol. 1: King of the Super-Villains

In hardcover in August, issues #1-7 by Joshua Williamson and Howard Porter, plus a story from Batman: Urban Legends #6. This ends just before the "Shadow War" crossover, contemporaneous with Batman Vol. 6: Abyss.

Earth-Prime

In paperback in January, collecting the six-issue CW TV miniseries.

Fables 20th Anniversary Box Set

Not certain, but I expect this collects the four Fables Compendium volumes, being issues #1–150 plus The Last Castle, 1001 Nights of Snowfall, Werewolves of the Heartland, Jack of Fables #33–35, and The Literals #1–3.

The Flash by Mark Waid Omnibus Vol. 1

Collects Flash #62–91, Flash Annual #4–6, Green Lantern #30–31 and #40, Flash Special #1, and Justice League Quarterly #10, being about the first three Flash by Mark Waid paperbacks and collecting among others the “Return of Barry Allen” storyline and the Zero Hour tie-in that debuted Impulse.

The Flash Vol. 17: Eclipse

Issues #772–779 starring Wally West, by Jeremy Adams. This ends just before the War for Earth-3 crossover.

Flashpoint Beyond

I mean, I was going to read it, but I admit I’d written this off as just for the purposes of Flash movie tie-in, given that the saga of these characters seemed well and truly over as of Tom King’s Batman. But I did not expect what Geoff Johns apparently has in store here, and I’m curious where he’s headed with it. In paperback in November.

Future State: Gotham Vol. 2

Issues #8–12 by Dennis Culver and Giannis Milonogiannis.

Grayson: The Superspy Omnibus (2022 Edition)

Collects Grayson #1–20, Grayson: Futures End #1, Secret Origins #8, Grayson Annual #1–3, Robin War #1–2 and Nightwing: Rebirth #1 by Tom King, Tim Seeley, and Mikel Janin.

Hardware: Season One

In hardcover, by Brandon Thomas and Denys Cowan, collecting the first six issues of the new series and Milestone Returns: Infinite Edition #0. Coming in October.

Harley Quinn & the Gotham City Sirens Omnibus (2022 Edition)

Paul Dini’s Gotham City Sirens #1–26 and the Catwoman #83 special.

Harley Quinn Vol. 1: No Good Deed

In paperback, following the hardcover, collecting issues #1–6 by Stephanie Phillips and Riley Rossmo and a story from Batman: Urban Legends.

Harley Quinn Vol. 2: Keepsake

The second volume by Stephanie Nicole Phillips and Riley Rossmo. No contents listed but this should include the issues #8–9 tie-ins to “Fear State”.

Harley Quinn: 30 Years of the Maid of Mischief: The Deluxe Edition

If I’m understanding correctly, there’s going to be a Harley Quinn 30th Anniversary Special, and this is a deluxe hardcover of that story plus the following: Batman Adventures #12, Detective Comics #831, Batman and Robin Adventures #18, Batman: Gotham Adventures #10, Batman: Gotham Knights #14, Harley Quinn #3, Gotham City Sirens #20–21, Harley Quinn Holiday Special #1, Harley Quinn: Be Careful What You Wish For Special Edition #1, Harley Quinn 25th Anniversary Special #1, Harley Quinn: Make 'Em Laugh #3, and Harley Quinn: Black + White + Red #14.

Harley Quinn: The Animated Series Vol. 1: The Eat. Bang! Kill Tour

Interesting that the collection of the Tee Franklin miniseries is listed as Vol. 1, since it collects the whole thing, issues #1–6. Does this suggest more to come?

House of Mystery: The Bronze Age Omnibus Vol. 3

Issues #227–254 of the 1970s series.

The Human Target Book One

Boo, I say boo, to the hardcover collection of Tom King and Greg Smallwood's The Human Target that only collects issues #1-6. I mean, all best to the creators that maybe the first collection drums up more interest for the end of the series, but I'm holding out for the deluxe collection with all the issues.

I Am Batman Vol. 1

In hardcover, collecting issues #0–5 of the new series by John Ridley.

Icon & Rocket: Season One

In hardcover in August, collecting Icon & Rocket: Season One #1-6 by Reginald Hudlin and Doug Braithwaite.

The Joker Presents: A Puzzlebox

In hardcover in August by Matthew Rosenberg and Jesus Merino, collecting the seven-issue whodunit miniseries. I’m excited to read this one and not figure out who did it before the end (I never do!).

The Joker Vol. 1

In paperback in October, following the hardcover, by James Tynion and Guillem March.

The Joker Vol. 2

The second collection from James Tynion and Guillem March, in hardcover in August, collecting issues #6–9 and the 2021 Annual #1. This title ends with issue #15.

Joker/Harley: Criminal Sanity

Paperback of Joker/Harley: Criminal Sanity (which I reviewed), following the hardcover, by Kami Garcia.

Justice League Incarnate

In hardcover in September, collecting Joshua Williamson’s multiversal follow-up miniseries to Infinite Frontier.

Justice League Vol. 2

Said to collect Justice League #64–71, but given that Brian Michael Bendis' run ends with #74, I’d be surprised if it’s not the whole thing. In hardcover in November.

Justice League vs. the Legion of Super-Heroes

Premiering in paperback (?), the six-issue miniseries by Brian Michael Bendis and Scott Godlewski, arriving in December.

Kamandi by Jack Kirby Vol. 1

Kamandi #1–20 by Jack Kirby.

The Last God: Book I of the Fellspyre Chronicles

Paperback by Phillip Kennedy Johnson, following the hardcover, and collecting The Last God #1–12, The Last God: Tales From the Book of Ages #1, and The Last God: Songs of Lost Children #1.

Milestone Compendium Two

Great to see a second Milestone Compendium, and it finally collects the “Worlds Collide” crossover with the Superman titles (probably no Colorforms cover though). There’s still material for at least another volume or two. Said to collect Blood Syndicate #13–23, Hardware #13–21, Icon #11–21, Shadow Cabinet #1–4, Static #9–20, Steel #6–7, Superboy #6–7, Superman: The Man of Steel #35–36, and Worlds Collide #1, in paperback in January.

Monkey Prince

In hardcover in January, collecting the first six issues of the series and the debut story from DC Festival of Heroes: The Asian Superhero Celebration by Gene Luen Yang and Bernard Chang.

New Teen Titans Omnibus Vol. 1 (2022 Edition)

Just as this series of New Teen Titans reprints is ending, looks like DC’s going back to print them all over again. Good that they’ll be available, though I wanted to see the series continue on to the New Titans era.

Nice House on the Lake Vol. 2

In paperback in December (too long a wait!), the second collection of the horror series by James Tynion and Álvaro Martínez Bueno.

Nightwing Vol. 1: Leaping Into The Light

By Tom Taylor and Bruno Redondo, in paperback following the hardcover, collecting issues #78–83.

Nightwing Vol. 2

I’m not totally sure what this is, because the second collection of Tom Taylor’s Nightwing, called Nightwing: Fear State, is due in hardcover in June (collecting Nightwing #84–88 and Nightwing 2021 Annual), and this is also hardcover and due in December. This is supposed to be Nightwing #95–100, which, best I can think, maybe refers to the end of Devin Grayson’s 2000s run? I don’t know.

Nubia & the Amazons

In hardcover in September by Vita Ayala and Stephanie Williams. Said to collect the story from Infinite Frontier #0 and the six-issue miniseries, seemingly including the “Trial of the Amazons” tie-in issues.

Nubia: Queen of the Amazons

In hardcover in December, following “Trial of the Amazons” — if I understand correctly — this is said to collect Nubia & the Amazons #1 (a backup story, or maybe this is wrong?), Nubia: Coronation Special #1, and Nubia: Queen of the Amazons #1–4.

One-Star Squadron

In paperback in November, the six-issue miniseries by Mark Russell and Steve Lieberman.

The Other History of the DC Universe

In paperback in November, the five-issue miniseries by John Ridley, following the hardcover (my review of Other History of the DC Universe).

The Phantom Stranger Omnibus

This was previously announced in DC Comics Fall 2020 solicitations in March 2020, so not entirely surprising it never made it to print. Here it is again, due out in November 2022. Contents said to be The Phantom Stranger #1-6 (1952), The Phantom Stranger #1-41 (1969), stories from Saga of the Swamp Thing #1-13, Who’s Who: The Definitive Directory of the DC Universe #18, Brave and the Bold #89, #98, and #145, Showcase #80, Justice League of America #103, House of Secrets #150, DC Super-Stars #18, Secret Origins #10, and DC Comics Presents #25 and #72.

Punchline

Various Punchline spotlight and backup stories, including from Joker 80th Anniversary 100-Page Super Spectacular #1, Punchline #1, The Joker #1–14, and Batman: Urban Legends. In hardcover in September.

Refrigerator Full of Heads

The Hill House Comics follow-up to Basketful of Heads (which I reviewed), in hardcover in October by Rio Youers and Tom Fowler.

Represent!

The 14-part digital series collected in paperback in January.

Robin & Batman

In hardcover in August, collecting the three-issue miniseries by Jeff Lemire and Dustin Nguyen.

Robin Vol. 2: I Am Robin

In paperback in September, collects Robin #7-12 and Robin 2021 Annual #1 by Joshua Williamson. As with Batman Vol. 6: Abyss and Deathstroke, Inc. Vol. 1, this ends just before the "Shadow War" crossover.

Robins: Being Robin

In paperback in September, collecting the six-issue miniseries by Tim Seeley.

Rogues

In hardcover in October, collecting the four-issue DC Black Label miniseries by Joshua Williamson and Leomacs.

Rorschach

Paperback of the 12- issue Tom King miniseries, in December.

Sleeper Omnibus (2022 Edition)

Collecting, I think, two “seasons” and about 24 or so issues by Ed Brubaker and Sean Phillips.

Strange Adventures

Paperback collecting of the 12-issue miniseries by Tom King, following the hardcover. I enjoyed Strange Adventures, though I liked the contemporaneous Rorschach better.

Suicide Squad: Blaze

At this point there’s just no DC Black Label title I’ll say no to, and I’m so impressed with the sometimes-stuffy DC for being willing to lend their mainstream IP to more mature material. Of course the Suicide Squad is a perfect fit, and while I’m a bit leery of what seems like a Squad made up of all new characters, I’m up for it nonetheless. The three-issue miniseries by Simon Spurrier and Aaron Campbell, in December in hardcover.

Suicide Squad: King Shark

I’m not sure I would have run to this one either, despite a writer and an artist I both like, Tim Seeley and Scott Kolins, but Seeley also brings back one of his Nightwing characters, too, and I’m curious how that all works together. The six-issue miniseries, in paperback in September.

Superman and the Authority

In paperback in November, the four-issue miniseries by Grant Morrison and Mikel Janin, following the hardcover.

Superman Red & Blue

Paperback of the six-issue miniseries, following the hardcover.

Superman Vs. Lobo

I'd forgotten about this one in terms of the random, weird DC Black Label material being produced right now. A Superman and Lobo team-up, in hardcover, written by Tim Seeley and Sarah Beattie, and with a Black Label level of maturity? Yeah, I'll read that. Coming in August.

Superman: Action Comics Vol. 2: The Arena

The second collection by Phillip Kennedy Johnson, collected in paperback, and connecting (after a fashion) with Superman and the Authority.

Superman: Birthright: The Deluxe Edition

With Mark Waid making something of a resurgence at DC, it makes sense DC should re-release Birthright, especially with deluxe-size Leinil Francis Yu art. We’re swimming in Superman origin stories now and this story never quite took DC by storm the way I think they hoped it would, but it remains quite decent as a standalone Superman tale.

Superman: Son of Kal-El Vol. 2

The second collection by Tom Taylor and John Timms, including an appearance by Aqualad Jackson Hyde. In November.

The Swamp Thing Volume 2: Conduit

Issues #5–10 by Ram V and Mike Perkins. This finishes the first “season” of the comic, which has recently been extended with a second season of issues #11–16.

Tales of the Amazons

Not unlike Batman vs. Robin: Road to War, this is a hardcover collection of various stories leading up to "Trial of the Amazons." Among the issues said to be collected here are Wonder Woman #781-784, Wonder Woman 80th Anniversary 100-Page Super Spectacular #1 (both also found in the Wonder Woman Vol. 2: Through A Glass Darkly collection), Nubia: Coronation Special #1 (also in Nubia: Queen of the Amazons), and then two issues I don't actually see on DC's schedule: Artemis: Wanted #1 and Olympus: Rebirth #1.

Task Force Z Vol. 1: Death's Door

I’m in to reading the Infinite Frontier era of books now and I’ve been very impressed to see the seemingly random seeds sprinkled early on that have come to fruition later — namely, that DC killing off one of its most well-known villains ultimately results in the Suicide-Squad-with-zombies series Task Force Z. What an insane concept, and at the same time Red Hood Jason Todd’s newest ongoing. I’m excited; issues #1–6 by Matthew Rosenberg with Eddy Barrows arrive in hardcover in September, along with the backup stories from Detective Comics #1041–1043.

Teen Titans Academy Vol. 2: Exit Wounds

In hardcover in July (in time for the paperback of Vol. 1), this is issues #6–12. The series is canceled with issue #15, so maybe we’ll find this collection gets extended.

Titans United

On one hand I’m wary of an obvious TV-aligned Titans miniseries that might try to shoehorn TV continuity into the comics Titans; on the other hand, if this brings some sort of classic Hawk and Dove back to continuity, I’m all for it. And the HBO Max show is a guilty pleasure after all. Collects the seven-issue miniseries by Cavan Scott and Jose Luis, in paperback in September.

Trial of the Amazons

In hardcover in October, collecting the crossover by Becky Cloonan, Michael Conrad, Stephanie Williams, and Vita Ayala.

War for Earth-3

In paperback in September, collecting the crossover issues Flash #780, Suicide Squad #13, and Teen Titans Academy #13 with War for Earth-3 #1–2.

Who's Who Omnibus Vol. 2

Continuing the long-awaited collection series, this is Who’s Who in the DC Universe #1-16 (what I believe is the 1990s "loose-leaf" version), Who’s Who in the Legion of Super-Heroes #1-7, and Who’s Who Update 1993 #1-2.

Wonder Girl: Homecoming

Collects Joelle Jones' Wonder Girl #1-7, Future State: Wonder Woman #1-2, and the vignette from from Infinite Frontier #0. This is all the issues so far that will be released under the "Wonder Girl" banner, with two other solicited issues to be released as Trial of the Amazons: Wonder Girl (and likely collected with that storyline). In hardcover in August.

Wonder Woman Black & Gold

Collects issues #1–6 of the series.

Wonder Woman by George Perez Omnibus (2022 Edition)

Though the solicitation doesn’t indicate, surely this must be a reprint of just the first (of the three) omnibus, collecting George Perez’s Wonder Woman #1–24 and the first annual.

Wonder Woman Vol. 2: Through A Glass Darkly

The second collection of Becky Cloonan and Michael Conrad's run, collecting Wonder Woman #780-784, the Wonder Woman 2021 Annual #1, and (all of, I hope) the Wonder Woman 80th Anniversary 100-Page Super Spectacular #1. See also the _Tales of the Amazons_ collecting leading up to "Trial of the Amazons."

Wonder Woman: Earth One Complete Collection

All three of Grant Morrison and Yanick Paquette’s Wonder Woman: Earth One graphic novels in one collection together, in paperback in November.

Wonder Woman: Evolution

Collects the eight-issue miniseries by Stephanie Nicole Phillips in hardcover in October.

Wonder Woman: The Golden Age Omnibus Vol. 5

Collects Action Comics #142, Wonder Woman #35-47, and Sensation Comics #90-104.

World of Krypton

Robert Venditti writes some good sci-fi and I could look at Robert Avon Oeming’s art all day, but I’m suspicious of a new World of Krypton miniseries, which at best will come and go without making a ripple, at worst will be half-heartedly taken as definitive by some writer irrespective of the Superman creative team and just end up causing confusion. If I’m overlooking a real gem, let me know. Collects the six-issue miniseries in November in paperback.

Young Justice Book Six

The final collection of the original Peter David series includes Young Justice #44–55 plus the “World Without Young Justice” tie-in issues Robin #101, Superboy #99, and Impulse #85.